Bone and gum grafting for dental implants
Bone graft explained
Bone graft procedures are sometimes needed before you can benefit from dental implants. If you need teeth replacement (for hopeless, terminal or missing teeth), you may be in a situation where you do not have enough bone for implants. This refers to the right amount of bone volume, to support the implant in the supporting jaw. The implant will act as a “replacement tooth root”, so the crown (the part above the gums) can be attached. This is common with shrinking facial bones or jaw atrophy, as a result of a missing tooth, dental infections or previous extractions or oral surgery.
A way to augment the bone volume is a bone graft procedure. At Complete Implant and Sedation Dentistry, this is a common procedure. Bone grafting can be performed comfortably using IV sedation (sleep dentistry).
Bone graft methods
There are several bone graft methods performed by our implant dentists. Once we have assessed your personal situation, we will advise which options are most suitable for you. Some techniques require a few months of integration to take place after the bone graft procedure, before an implant can be placed:
- Particulate Bone Graft and Guided Bone Regeneration: Small chips of natural bone from a nearby area, or substitute material (for example Bio-Oss, MinerOss, 4-Bone, Puross, BondBone or Bio-Oss Collagen) are used to provide a scaffold to allow new bone in-growth, augmenting the missing bone. This can sometimes be done at the same time as implant placement to augment any thin or missing bone areas, and is good for “horizontal” bone augmentation. A collagen and/or PRF membrane is secured over the graft before gum closure, to guide successful new bone formation.
- Block Bone Graft: Bone is harvested (taken) from the back or front of the lower jaw and attached as one block to the area of missing bone. We can also use bone blocks from allograft (donor bone) sources and tissue banks, specially if a larger bone volume is needed, in order to avoid unnecessarily invasive surgery in the mouth and to have easier healing. Bone blocks can provide mainly horizontal but also some vertical bone augmentation.
Alternative and faster methods
Other bone graft methods - in case of shrinking facial bones, resorbed or deficient jaw bone - allow implants to be placed immediately, without any delay or having to wait for the grafts to mature and integrate.
- Bone Spreading/Splitting: The deficient area is divided and expanded, to allow the implant to fit.
- Short Implants: Our clinic has experience with the use of particular brands of short implants, which can fit in small areas and still provide a strong foundation for teeth. Dr Habibi has compiled clinical data studying the results of this technique and it has been studied by a Master degree student.
Gum graft procedures may be used to restore and rejuvenate receded or aged gum (gum recession), cover unsightly or sensitive exposed tooth root surfaces, thicken weak and delicate gum (thin biotype), and augment thin or missing tissue around dental implants.
A gum graft treatment is also called gingival graft, gingival grafting or gum regeneration. It is used to regenerate or modify the soft tissues in the periodontal area that is thin, receding, or expected to recede.
- All On 4 or Zygomatic Implants: these methods, used for multiple or all teeth replacement, often allow an immediate and effective reconstruction without a bone graft.
- Sinus Lift: Modifications to the sinus spaces in the upper jaw, in case of severe bone loss situations. This is a very predictable and often surprisingly comfortable way to create an abundant amount of bone even in upper jaws that are very affected by bone shrinkage. It can be done at the time of implant placement in some cases, or in advance in other cases (Also called Sinus Elevation).
We often see patients who were previously told they do not have enough bone for implants, but reparative options were not provided to them. Dr Habibi and the team believe that no one should have to suffer discomfort or stress from lack of function from shrinking jaw bone and bone deficiency (or poorly fitting dentures) without having the option of better outcomes.
This is why we are committed to your long-term health, particularly the health of your teeth and gums. With modern bone grafting procedures, and solutions such as dental implants, we are able to successfully resolve major dental issues. And if you speak to our friendly receptionists, you will find out that we do this in a state-of-the-art clinic, using the latest pain-free sleep dentistry techniques, to help you restore your oral health with procedures such as bone grafting, comfortably and predictably.